Thursday, May 12, 2016

Q: For hemothorax, minimally what size of chest tube should be inserted?

Answer: 36 F

If hemothorax is suspected, for efficient drainage minimally 36 French size of chest tube should be inserted. Also if pneumothorax is evident with hemothorax (hemopneumothorax), it would be helpful to insert two chest tubes, with one tube draining the pneumothorax placed in a more antero-superior place. In event of drainage of more than 1000-1500 mL of blood via chest tube after insertion or continuous output of  150-200 mL/hr for 2 hours, patient should be strongly considered for surgical thoracotomy. Obviously, supportive care should be provided with transfusions and hemodynamic management.

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